BLESS is an upcoming F2P MMORPG developed by the Korea-based Neowiz Games with closed beta beginning in early 2013.
BLESS will be a F2P MMORPG that first made its debut at G-Star 2011. BLESS began development in 2009 with a team of 150 experienced designers by Korea-based Neowiz Games. Plans are now in place to have a closed beta test in the first half of 2013 in Korea. The world of BLESS is brought to life with the award-winning Unreal 3 Engine and will provide state-of-the-art graphics.
Jacob Han: We chose the powerful Unreal Engine 3 to create BLESS’s immersive and seamless world, and even pushed the boundaries of the engine’s capabilities to showcase a top-quality online environment. Our studio has an extensive roster of talented engineers and programmers that have had prior experience with Unreal Engine and we are investing heavily in our own R&D to create the most realistic world possible. We are proud of our achievements with Unreal Engine 3 and are working closely with Epic Games to accomplish our goals. To cite one example, the Unreal Engine 3’s landscape tool was created upon our request to create a highly sophisticated game environment, and BLESS is the first game to utilize the tool.
We want to create the most immersive and realistic world that has ever been seen in an MMORPG. We want to go beyond what is possible for single-player PC or console games, but in an MMO setting.
BLESS has been influenced by fantasy themes and set in a medieval European style. The universe of BLESS houses 10 different races, each with its own extensive history and territory. These races are divided into two opposing realms, Hierapolis and Cosmopolis, locked in a fierce war in the name of religion and philosophy.
Jacob Han: Hieron and Union are two vast empires that rule BLESS’s world. They both foster vastly different ideologies and have consequently formed alliances in opposition to one another. These factions have distinct characteristics due to their natural environment and historical and cultural backgrounds. Races differ even amongst each other, but overall, Hieron is a medieval empire that values chivalry and loyalty to the state, whereas Union functions under federal statehood and is strongly reminiscent of the early Renaissance states of Southern Europe. Hieron is often coined the Holy Empire, whereas Union harbors the Free Cities. The differences between these two factions will affect gameplay in several ways through overarching themes, general ambience, mobs, NPCs, goals and player occupations. Depending on each individual’s faction of choice, the game experience itself will be dramatically different from that of an opposing player’s. We have created Hieron and Union not just for the sake of conflict, but to create a much more enriched and meaningful premise with which to experience BLESS’s world.
BLESS strives to reinvent how stories are told in a MMORPG using cinematic storytelling techniques, a detailed historical setting and emotionally involved characters. Each of the 10 races has its own personal story and the decisions you make in the game will ultimately affect how the world responds around you.
Jacob Han: To us, the most important elements of an MMORPG are not only immersive graphics and combat, but also a strong setting, story and even NPC dialogue, all intertwining in a complex, yet engaging manner. You will be able to step into an entirely new world that is both believable and comprehensive, made possible by BLESS’s background story, which we have taken painstaking effort to build. In BLESS, you will be able to adventure with intriguing characters against a realistic backdrop. Unlike traditional MMORPGs, players will be motivated to engage in a variety of role-play scenarios. This is because each faction and race has a different background setting and story influenced by the player’s decisions. The game provides constant feedback to the players to bring life to a living, breathing world full of adventure. You don’t simply play the game to acquire new armor sets and gain levels, but to experience honor, sacrifice, friendship or burning vengeance.
Ten races and eight classes offer a ton of diversity, and that’s just the beginning. You will be able to delve into an extremely in-depth level of customization where almost anything you can imagine is possible. We have some amazing customization features that no other MMORPG is capable of and will be showcasing them in the near future.
Jacob Han: The combat that you will experience depends largely on the class you choose to play. For example, you can become a traditional mage who ravages the battlefield with spells of ice and fire. At the same time, if you like your play style with a little more finesse and control, you will be able to select a class that requires a higher level of technical skill. If you enjoy more of a supporting role in party environments, you will be able to embody those qualities with a specific type of class as well. It is very important for us that all users do not fall into the same pattern of strategic combat. Regardless of your type of combat style, your preferences will ultimately be fulfilled by the class that you choose.
We will be showcasing how combat works with each of the eight classes in the near future. What we have publicized so far does not reflect what the final game will look like. We can’t wait to show the fans what we have been working on.